331C: Girl With The Ribbon

I'm looking for an illustrated children's collection of stories. The story I remember most vividly is that of a girl that always wears a ribbon around her neck (I think it was yellow), and eventually her husband removes it and her head falls off.  It is NOT from the book "In a Dark, Dark Room."  The illustrations were simple black (or blue?) and white, with pops of color (kinda similar to Robert Bright's).  The book also had a story about a young man that only had a couple hairs on his chest, and he was trying to grow more to prove that he was brave (my memory of this plot line is pretty fuzzy though).  I borrowed it from the library as a child in the 90s (I was 5ish?), and it was pretty beat up then so maybe published significantly earlier?  I attribute this book to my lifelong irrational inability of wearing anything around my neck (necklaces, scarves, turtlenecks, etc.) and would love to prove that this book exists.

331A: Russell Raccoon Discovers Wonderful World Of Daytime (Solved!)

This was a favorite book of my children in the 70’s and 80’s and I made the motherly mistake of giving it away, so would dearly love to find a copy.  I don’t think Russell’s name was in the title.

Russell Raccoon was not like the other raccoons.  He couldn’t sleep in the daytime and fell asleep at night when his gang was out scavenging  One day when he couldn’t sleep he wandered out of his home to discover a whole wonderful world of daylight.   He met a little boy with whom he became friends.  There was a delightful picture of Russell riding on the back of the boy’s tricycle.  When the boss of his raccoon gang, Emma Jean Smudge, found out what he was doing she hit him on the head with her purse and told him to stay away from humans.  Picture of that was very funny.  One day when Russell went to visit his friend, the boy brought him inside his house and showed him the bedroom that had been made for Russell, complete with a little bed with his name on it.  Russell decided to move in with the boy.  The last page of the book shows all of Russell’s group including Emma Jean standing in line outside the house door at night as Russell hands out fig newtons.

330Z: Toy Horse Comes To Life

It’s a children’s book, I think middle grade level?  Not sure though, but I don’t remember it having pictures.  A girl wants a horse for her birthday, but her parents get her a model horse instead.  Girl is disappointed (I would be too!).  She climbs a tree with the model and puts it on a branch, but is mad at it and flicks it down to the ground.  It comes to life (full sized) and talks.  She rides it around.  I don’t remember how it ends.  I probably read it in the early 90’s.

330Y: World Girl History Series, Including Dolls (Solved!)

I’m looking for an early-to-mid-90s “American Girl”-style series of short illustrated chapter books about girls living in different periods of world history, each with their own 18-inch doll.

I am definitively NOT remembering Pleasant Company’s own “Girls of Many Lands” series. Believe me, that comes up every time I try to Google this series and it’s not the one I’m thinking of.

The line may have launched with one book for each doll, then gone out of business before publishing more books; I only remember the first book for each character, most likely obtained through the Scholastic Book Fair.

The characters and books were, as well as I can recall:
– An English girl in the 1100s who was into falconry. Name may have been Elinor/Eleanor. Vivid recollection of the cover: a blond girl in a dull blue dress reaching out to touch a falcon.
– An African (I want to say Igbo?) girl from the 1400s. Vivid recollection of her helping her older sister put on makeup before her wedding, including interior illustration of her applying the makeup. (I remember being surprised that they had makeup way back then. For some reason, that’s what stuck with me.)
– A French girl in the 1700s who wanted to be a ballet dancer. Name may have been Marie, or Marie-Something, or Something-Marie. Cover showed her dancing on a Parisian street.
– An Irish immigrant girl living in San Francisco in the late 1800s. Name may have been Bridget or some other extremely Irish name. Cover may have featured her holding a book to her chest and gazing meaningfully off into the distance. She had curly red hair because of course she did. I believe she also had a Chinese immigrant friend or potential friend who barely showed up and whom I hoped I’d read more about in later books. Vivid recollection of one scene in which she and another girl bond over how much they loved “Little Women” and cried over “the part with Beth.”

There may have been more; those are just the four I remember. On the last page of each book was a perforated card with a photograph of the dolls on it. You could tear out the card and send it away with a check to order a doll. They looked very much like American Girl dolls, so much that even as a child I could tell right away, “Oh, these people are totally ripping off American Girl.” But I could forgive them because hey, history’s a lot bigger than just America! Someone’s gotta fill that niche!

Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you!

330X: Wealthy Uncle Watches Orphaned Siblings Take Care Of Elderly Stockman “Uncle”

I discovered your website when googling several key words of the book I am seeking.  Someone else had also looked for it but I couldn’t find your answer to them.
The book is about four orphaned siblings who move from Britain to Australia as their guardian is an unknown great-uncle.  The young people are Alice, Betty and Sigismund plus another brother whose name I can’t recall.  Due to a case of mistaken identity they end up caring for a weak, elderly stockman in the outback as they think he is their uncle.  Their actual uncle is a neighbouring wealthy grazier who watches over them from a distance but wants to get a sense of their characters and ability to cope with adversity.  He has a grandson, Gene, who befriends the teenagers.
I believe it is set in the late forties or early fifties.  The copy I read was a slim green book without a dust jacket.  It was quite an old looking book in the library of my small prairie high school in Manitoba in the mid-sixties.

330V: Children’s Book, Poor Artistic Family, Toilet Paper Drawings

I have vivid memories of a children’s chapter book I got out of a Canadian library or school sometime in the mid-’90s. It was about an extremely poor family, a mother, a father, and a daughter who lived in a RV or mobile home or carriage or something; when the daughter registers for school, she says she has no address or birthplace because she was always moving.

They are so poor they can’t afford paper, and so the mother or father, a very talented artist, makes lots of drawings on toilet paper.

There are lots of comic-like drawings—I remember one which had a fork and peas in two panels, the first captioned “unsteady fork, steady peas” and the next with the peas falling off labelled “steady fork, unsteady peas.”

At one point, the daughter gets a letter sent to her with a drawing (reproduced in the book)—right side up it looks like a toucan, upside down it’s a man sitting on a toilet.

330U: Alligators (And Other Disappointing Pets)

I think it’s called something like “Alligators Don’t Make Great Pets,” and it has silly descriptions and illustrations of many animals that would not make good pets. I think the child might choose a dog at the end? I checked this book out from the library in the mid-1980s. I’ve been searching for this book for years and would LOVE to find it. Hope you can help.